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The Christian Meaning of Suffering (Part 1 of 2)
from Fr. Chad King on May 24, 2015
I was talking to somebody who considered himself old. He was questioning if the treatment he needed was really worth it. He is in fairly good health and still active, he is able to walk fairly easily, and breathe on his own. There certainly are others in worse health, but yet, he was questioning if he wanted to undergo the suffering—was it all worth it to prolong his life?
This made me think about how many people, especially the elderly, are being swayed by the thinking of the culture. They don't understand the Christian meaning of suffering. I hope we realize we are living in a "culture of death," as John Paul II coined. Not only with the tragedy of unborn children continuing to be killed every day, but also with euthanasia—or "physician assisted suicide"—becoming more and more common. These next two weeks, I want to present you with a reflection on the Christian meaning of suffering.
Reflections on Pope Saint John Paul II's: Salvifici Doloris (On the Christian Meaning of Human Suffering).
Suffering and Salvation
What comes of this great suffering? What is its purpose in the divine plan? From the greatest possible evil, God brings about the greatest good: the salvation of the human family, redemption from pain and suffering for those who do not merit it.
Precisely by means of this suffering [Jesus] must bring it about "that man should not perish, but have eternal life." Precisely by means of his cross he must strike at the roots of evil, planted in the history of man and in human souls. Precisely by means of his cross he must accomplish the work of salvation. (SD 16)
The suffering of Christ redeems suffering itself and opens up the possibility that the sufferer can share in the redemptive work of Christ (SD 19). The suffering of Christ leads to his glory; so, too, does the suffering of Christians. "Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account" (Matt. 5:10–11). John Paul wrote:
Christ has in a sense opened his own redemptive suffering to all human suffering. . . . Christ has accomplished the world's redemption through his own suffering. For, at the same time, this redemption, even though it was completely achieved by Christ's suffering, lives on and in its own special way develops in the history of man. It lives and develops as the body of Christ, the Church, and in this dimension every human suffering, by reason of the loving union with Christ, completes the suffering of Christ. It completes that suffering just as the Church completes the redemptive work of Christ. (SD 24)
The Christian approach to the problem of pain does not imply an indifference to human suffering, and for this reason Christians have always sought to express their faith in charitable works.
Christ's revelation of the salvific meaning of suffering is in no way identified with an attitude of passivity. Completely the reverse is true. The gospel is the negation of passivity in the face of suffering. Christ himself is especially active in this field. (SD 30)
Help Wanted: VBS Volunteers
We are in need of volunteers for Vacation Bible School, which takes place the week of Jun 8-12. The class sizes are limited, but if you are willing to help out, we can guarantee a spot for your child. We need help in the following classrooms listed below (both lead and assistant teachers). You do not have to have a teaching background. We provide you with a book & materials which guide you through each day–and we are always happy to help answer questions. We also are in need of two volunteers to head up the music part of VBS. The songs with their motions are provided to you on a CD. This is a great opportunity to get together with some friends and have a great time! Thank you so much for helping us out!
***Teens—this is a great way to earn your service for school. All teens can either work in either a classroom with an adult leader or helping with crafts or in the nursery.
Also VBS ART WEEK
Tue, Jun 2-Thu, Jun 4, 10:00am-2:00pm
Must be in Jr. High or High School to help out. More information forthcoming!
Call the Catholic Education Office or Denise Halloran at 480-893-1160.
[ VBS ]
Early Bird Registration for 2015-2016 Catholic Education Classes
Special fees during the month of MayREGISTER NOW!
[ Catholic Education ]
Knights of Columbus Sal Scordato Scholarship
Applications are being accepted for the Knights of Columbus Sal Scordato Scholarships available to students who are related to active Knights of Council 10062 or Assembly 14. One or more of the $500.00 scholarships will be awarded on merit (no financial data required). These scholarships are intended to help eligible students enhance their educational experience.
Information and applications are available from Gene Lutz at email@example.com or 480-759- 7921.
The deadline for submitting applications is Sun, May 31.
[ Knights of Columbus ]
Help Wanted: Civil Engineer or Landscape Architect
St. Gerard Circle is in the early planning stages of building a small park for the Parish. We are in need of a Civil Engineer or Landscape Architect to consult on erosion and environmental issues. We are looking for professionals who would be willing to donate some of their time to this project.
Please contact Katie at KC628@aol.com for more information.
[ St. Gerard Circle ]
First Saturday Rosary Hike
Jun 6, 2015 (9:00a - 11:00a)
Join other Parishioners for a Rosary Hike on South Mountain on the ﬁrst Saturday of every month! Fr. Rafael will give a short reﬂecon along the way and will offer the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
Begin at 9:00am.
Finish hike by 11:00am.
Mass at Corpus Christi. Hike along Warpaint trailhead.
for People of all ages (7-70+)
Bring a Rosary, water & a light snack.
For additional information, contact Pete Hofmann, 602-531-7487 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celebrate the Installation of Fr. Chad as Pastor and the 5th Anniversary of his Ordination to the Priesthood
Jun 7, 2015 (6:00p)
Save the Date for a Celebration on the Feast of Corpus Christi in honor of the Official Installation of Fr. Chad as our Pastor and his 5th Anniversary of his Ordination to the Priesthood!
Installation Mass with Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted at 5:00pm.
Eucharistic Procession at 6:00pm
Followed by a reception in the Parish Center at 6:30pm.
RSVP via the banner on the homepage of the parish website.
[ Special Mass/Event ]
Jun 8, 2015 to Jun 12, 2015 (8:30a - 12:00p)
Vacation Bible School will be held on Mon, Jun 8 through Fri, Jun 12 8:30am-12:00pm. There will be a special presentation by the children on Fri, Jun 12 from 12:00-1:00pm.
Registration runs through Wed, Apr 15.
Parishioners receive preference for the first 2 weeks of registration as classes are limited and filled on a first-come, first-served basis.
[ VBS ]
Marriage Enrichment: Second Saturday Summer Speaker Series
Jun 13, 2015 (5:00p)
Corpus Christi is beginning a brand new ministry for marriage enrichment! All married couples are invited to join us on the Second Saturdays of June, July, and August in the Parish Center immediately following the Saturday 4:00pm Vigil Mass.
June Session: Kurt & Julie Carrick
Dinner will be provided, so please RSVP with the Parish Office if you plan on attending.
Come hear dynamic guest speakers and spend time in fellowship with other couples from our parish!
Sat, Jul 11
Sat, Aug 8
[ Marriage Enrichment ]
Women's Sodality: Open House Meeting
Sep 2, 2015 (6:00p)
Rosary at 6:00pm in the Church followed by our Open House meeting.
[ Women's Sodality ]